Watch: Floyd the Barber repeatedly called Barney Fife ''Al'' throughout this Andy Griffith Show episode
Barney to Floyd: "You cannot call me Al."
In Mayberry, everybody remembers Floyd as the barber, but every now and again, he'd step up to accept bigger duties in one of TV's favorite small towns. Don Knotts once explained how the special friendship between Barney Fife and Floyd Lawson led the barber to become an occasional authority figure in Mayberry: "[Barney] was always friendly with Floyd, but he also sort of lorded himself over him. He’d bring him in as a deputy every once in a while. He’d deputize him and become his boss. Barney loved to do that.”
That's why it's extra funny when you revisit the third season episode of The Andy Griffith Show called "Convicts-At-Large" and find Barney and Floyd's friendship pushed to an unexpected extreme that leads Floyd to be the one "lording over" Barney for a change.
In the episode, three escaped female convicts hold Barney and Floyd hostage in their cabin. Throughout the episode, the convicts call Barney by the wrong name, referring to him exclusively as "Al," no matter how many times he insisted he was not Al. Out of fear or perhaps a bit poking fun, Floyd picks up on calling Barney by the name of Al, too, and what results is a sequence of scenes that likely would've confused any viewer tuning in late that season. Watch the clip above to see Barney warn Floyd the Barber that he cannot call him Al.
Can you imagine a Mayberry where Barney Fife is actually named Al? Al Fife just doesn't have quite the same ring to it.